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Fox News: Tea Party Vaults Gingrich into First

11:24 AM, Nov 17, 2011 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
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The latest Fox News poll shows Newt Gingrich leading the Republican presidential field, edging Mitt Romney.  Gingrich now has the support of 23 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, compared with 22 percent for Romney, 15 percent for Herman Cain, 8 percent for Ron Paul, 7 percent for Rick Perry, 6 percent for Michele Bachmann, 3 percent for Jon Huntsman, and 2 percent for Rick Santorum.

Newt

Support for Gingrich has almost doubled over the past three weeks.  Over that span, Gingrich is up 11 percentage points, Bachmann and Huntsman are up 3 points apiece, Romney is up 2 points, Paul and Santorum are down 1 point apiece, Perry is down 3 points, and Cain is down 9 points.  The number of respondents who are either undecided or want someone else has dropped from 17 to 14 percent.

Gingrich’s lead among potential Republican primary voters is driven largely by his support among those who consider themselves to be part of the Tea Party movement.  Gingrich has the support of 35 percent of Tea Party voters, which equals the tally for Cain (20 percent) and Romney (15 percent) combined.  No other candidate has double-digit support among the Tea Party.

The poll shows both Gingrich and Romney faring far better versus President Obama than they did five months ago.  In June, Gingrich trailed Obama by 19 points (53 to 34 percent).  He has since closed that gap by 14 points and trails by just 5 (46 to 41 percent).  In June, Romney trailed Obama by 7 points (48 to 41 percent).  He has since moved up 9 points and leads Obama by 2 (44 to 42 percent).

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